Analyst examines Obama's effect on polarization

12/04/07 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday | Listen to this entire show:

Over the weekend, a new poll in the Des Moines Register shows Barack Obama is the choice of 28 percent of Iowa Democrats likely to attend next month’s caucuses, up 6 points in the last month. That puts him ahead in that poll for the first time against Hilary Clinton.

Analysts say a key turning point in Obama’s campaign was three weeks ago when the six major candidates spoke at the Iowa Democratic Party’s traditional Jefferson-Jackson dinner before 9,000 Democrats. There, he delivered a speech so compelling that supporters for some of the other candidates reportedly jumped to their feet and cheered.

Part of Obama’s appeal has been that he can break the partisan divide in the country.

Journalist Ron Brownstein’s new book, The Second Civil War: How Extreme Partisianship has Paralyzed Washington and Polarized America, deals with that topic. WMNF spoke with Brownstein last week.

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